Five Bennett's Wallabies escaped from a private zoo at Roaches
Hall during World War II
The zoo was owned by Courtney Brocklehurst who tragically lost his life in WW II. These few bred and became as many as 50.
They have been seen by many people over the years. Have you seen them? If you have, tell your story by contacting the webmaster and I'll publish it on the Memories page.
Three Yak and a Nilgai antelope were also released at the same time. I have not heard stories on the Nilgai. So anything you know about it would be great to know.
Annie Arrowsmith saw one and took a picture on 16th Sept 2017. This is what she wrote in an email...
Hi. We stayed at the wild boar in Wincle on Friday and Saturday night. On Saturday morning I took my dog for a walk whilst my husband and friend went out for the day. As I approached Wincle church I noticed a creature in some long grass. The creature was still and my instinct was that it was a wallaby. I didn't see it move and when I walked past about 10 mins later it was gone... I attach the two photos I took of it. What do you think???
Then......Hi. We went Australia last year so saw lots of roos n wallabies. I am almost certain that it was one. I am so annoyed that I didn't wait and see it move. I didn't realise that so few have been seen in the area. Of course you are welcome to put something on the website. I've been reading it today and feel privileged to of seen one. It looked really well and just kept looking at me from the long grass. Let's hope there are some more sightings...
Sue Bates saw what certainly appears to be a Wallaby between Shaw Bottom and Hazelbarrow on 26 Apr 2015. Below is her email.
My name is Sue Bates. I have just returned home from a super day's walking around the Roaches. At about 11am I looked across a field and in the far corner, about 100 metres away, (grid ref SK 0138 6359), I saw a round, smooth, fury grey/brown mammal bottom disappearing between some rocks. It was not a dog, fox, deer or cat. I did think it was a wallaby as its gait was not even but more lollopy(?). I had heard many years ago that there were wallabies somewhere in the Peak District but was not certain of where or if they are still roaming free. When I saw your reports of recent sighting I felt I must let you know what I saw today. Whilst I have no photographs and did not see the animals complete body I am quite confident that it was indeed a wallaby.
Hi. We were walking towards Gradbach from Luds Church at dusk last night. Around 7:25 when we heard, then spotted a wallaby around 20ft from the path. Our dogs spotted it too, the wallaby then stood in one position whilst looking at us. It was getting dark at this point so we carried on; whilst the wallaby stayed in the same position, head and upper body visible over the vegetation. The spotting was after taking the higher path from Luds Church back down towards Gradbach. Just thought it would be of interest to you.
The last sighting with photo/video evidence was Aug 2 2009 near Hangingstone Swithamley by David Hobson of Buxton on August 2nd 2009. Below is the email David sent me.
I was walking towards danebridge about 7am on the 2nd of august this year and was surprised to see a head looking out at me.
By the time i had gotten my camera out and put batteries in it had moved off a bit but i managed to get a couple of pieces of video and some pics, the pic i have sent is about the best that i got.
THESE ARE DAVID'S 2 VIDEOS
Mrs Pickford saw a wallaby under Ramshaw Rocks at end of August 2011
Wallaby sighting near Burton-on-Trent by Nigel Roberts and his partner Michelle on 19th July 2010 see email below
Hi there my name is Nigel Roberts just a quick message to say Monday 19 me and my partner Michelle were traveling home to newhall at around 1am and were on the road alongside the old draclow powerstation and at the side of the road on the grass verge was a Wallerby hopping along the side of the road we stopped but it crossed the road towards the old powerstation before I could get a pick
Two wallabies seen together for the first time in over 10 years by Robert Ward on Kinder Scout on 18th Sept 2009. See email below
Just returned from a walk on Kinder Scout and googled wallabies and Kinder Scout, finding your page. Today, 2 p.m. walking West at the end of Seal Edge, just where the path turns left (South) towards the top of Fair Brook Naze, I surprised two large brown upright animals, surely too large to be mountain hares. They bounded away quite quickly.
Wallabies on Kinder Scout evidently are not new. I received this email from David Hurst on 23 Sept 2009
So pleased to hear about recent sightings of Wallabies in the area, I really hope that it means they are re-populating again.
I found it very interesting to hear about sightings in the Kinder Scout area. My family lived in Castleton in the Hope Valley until recently and a few years back, I would guess 7 to 10 years ago, my brother sighted a Wallaby near to Mam Tor on the old abandoned road which is near to Kinder Scout. I have never previously heard a report of a sighting in this area so hopefully it suggests that a few had survived in this area and are still alive today.
Kind regards, David.
Laurie Fentimen sent me this email on 2nd Sept 09
I was walking south across Kinder Scout about 5pm on Saturday 15th August, trying to find the path back from Kinder Downfall to Grindsbrooke Clough again – I had lost it somewhere a little while earlier. It was just south of the high point, trying to find a way across the deep gullies cut into the peat when I found myself looking face to face at an animal, sat up on its hind legs, some ten yards from me. We looked at each other for a few moments, and it was away across the peat at speed, heading west. I had no camera, and even if I had, I doubt I would have reacted quickly enough. I tried to tell myself it was a large hare, but I knew it wasn't really. I thought about wallabies, but thinking there could not possibly be wallabies out there in the middle of the dark peak, I almost forgot about it again as my focus retuned to path finding. Then this evening I opened the latest Walk magazine and fond the article on the wallabies of the Peak District. It was what I saw – brilliant!
Single wallaby seen near Wetton Mill, Wetton on 31st July 2009 by Kate Cooper and family. Below is the email Kate sent me.
Hello there Bob,
We're just back from a holiday staying at Wetton Mill, near Wetton.
The first evening (Friday, 31st July) we were out for a walk when my
15 year old son remarked in a rather bemused voice, 'look, there's a
baby kangaroo'. We looked... and there was a wallaby. It was about
100 yards away from us, on a grassy hillside below a wood. I'd heard
there were wallabies at the Roaches, but I gather they're fairly
rarely sighted now? And Wetton is a fair distance from the Roaches
I googled a bit, found your site, and thought you'd like to know.
Single wallaby near Lud Church on 29th March 2009 by Andy Burton of Sheffield.
Below are two of the photos Andy sent in.
This is the email Andy sent me.
29 March 2009,
Just got back from a weekend based at Gradbach youth hostel.Whilst on walk up to lud church spotted a wallaby in the heather not more than 10 yards away.So there is at least still one of the creatures still alive out there!
Best Regards Andy Burton (Sheffield)
Neil Caton sent me two photos of the wallaby. They are from an old camera phone so are not high quality
This is the e-mail I received from Neil Caton on Nov 25th 2007
Walking from Danebridge at 8am this morning, I came over the top past Hangingstone and came across a wallaby. it didn't move and allowed me to get within about 3 feet. It carried on down the path for about 100 yards.